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Day Two ; Locality One (or Six if you include Day One) Black Sahara, South of Erfoud 20th February 2019 Well this is where things really get interesting, so stick with this thread as there are dozens of photos of fossils coming up. Looks at the tags if you want clues. I was up bright and early and wandered out at about 7 am to watch the sun rise over the still mighty Erg Chebbi dunes. And as night's candles were burnt out and jocund day stood tiptoe over the misty duney tops, the chaps came to join me and managed lots of photos. Here's one, if you would like to see more, I'm busy posting a kazillion of 'em under the Nature Photography thread.
Day One ; Locality Five Sahara Desert 19th February 2019 An advert for Erfoud, the fossil capital of Morocco. But no time today, the sun is setting. "Tomorrow", Anouar promises me. And then suddenly we are out of the mountains and on the fringes of the mighty Sahara Desert, the largest hot desert in the world. (Antarctica and the Arctic are bigger, but cold deserts) Many think of the Sahara as being sand, but actually, only a fraction of it is composed of the ergs (sand and sand dunes), most of the desert is hamada - rock desert. It is often fossiliferous. In the west, around Agadir, it is often yellow and contains Cretaceous fossils such as ammonites, south of there, the whitish yellow rocks of the Palaeogene where whale fossils can be found in the desert, but in the east, such as here, the rocks are often grey or black , hence the term, "Black Sahara". They range in age from the Precambrian stromatolite reefs near Ouarzazate through to some Lower Carboniferous patches North of Merzouga near Erfoud. Here in Merzouga they are mostly Devonian in age. Also nodules and geodes containing crystals and desert roses and other strange geological features may be found. And those aren't mountains in the distance, those are sand dunes. The dunes of the mighty Erg Chebbi up to 150 metres high. But no time for collecting today. The sun was setting and it was time for dinner and a sleep. We were going to stay in a Berber desert nomad tent, but they're mostly a bit touristy and some have been forcibly shut down since i was there, but the temperature was going to be only i degree above freezing tonight, so, no thank you very much, a hotel it shall be.
FranzBernhard posted a topic in Fossil Hunting TripsVery small outcrops northwest of Graz are perhaps the richest site of Silurian fossils in Styria. There may be other sites with somewhat older macrofossils in Styria, but not as rich. The outcrops are part of the Palaeozoic of Graz, a thrust sheet within the Eastern Alps, composed or Silurian to Pennsylvanian sediments. It consists of three separate nappes, the outcrop and fossils presented here belong to the Eggenfeld-member of the Kötschberg-formation within the Rannach nappe. Geological map of Styria with the Palaeozoic of Graz situated north of Graz. The red X is the location of the fossil site. Geological and structural map of the Palaeozoic of Graz. Note that the colors of the Rannach facies and Hochlantsch facies have been accidentally interchanged, the red X is the location of the fossil site. From Gasser et al. (2009). Stratigraphy and facies distribution of the Palaeozoic of Graz. Kötschberg-formation is Nr. 10 (red X), thicknesses of formations are not to scale. From Gasser et al. (2009). The age of the Eggenfeld-member is, based on conodont data, upper Silurian (Ludlow, Pridoli) to lowermost Devonian (Lochkovian). What´s special about this site is the abundance of orthocerids in some only a few dm thick layers of grey to brown dolomite and dolomitic limestone that are intercalated with tuffitic rocks. And also somewhat special is the number of papers dealing with these very small and poor outcrops. The occurrence of orthocerids is known since the 1950ies, a good up-to-date (2010) summary is this paper, it mentions 16(!) nautiloid taxa, most of them orthocerids. Its in English and includes pics of fossils and a stratigraphic section: GPZ_Eggenfeld_Histon_2010.pdf These are the seven nautiloid genera figured in this paper, no species assignment was made.